Look for the label!
Looking for organic cloth diapers? We’ve got ’em—certified! (Did you know that, unlike food, cotton and other textiles don’t have to be certified in order to be described as organic? In fact, brands can even freely use the phrase “certified organic” to describe a product that is not! It’s just not heavily regulated yet. That means if you don’t see proof of certification, there’s no way to know if that product’s claim to use organic materials is legitimate. Common labels for organic textile standards are Organic Exchange [OE] or Global Organic Textile Standard [GOTS].)
Here’s a little more of the nitty-gritty on organic cotton certification:
Because diapers are often made with a combination of different fabrics, two of the common certifications are the “OE 100” and the “OE Blended” standards. Both of these standards (soon to be combined into one: “Organic Content Standard” or “OCS”) guarantee that the cotton in the product is grown to organic standards, which are verified by an independent third party. OE 100 means that the product contains 100% organic cotton fiber, but that it may (or may not!) be processed to organic standards. An OE Blended product has a minimum of 5% certified organic cotton. OE and OCS certifications should not be confused with “OEKO®-TEX Standard 100”—a standard that ensures products do not contain harmful substances. Just because a product does not contain harmful substances does not mean it was grown or processed organically.
Global Organic Textile Standard
A more stringent level of certification can be found on products carrying a GOTS label. GOTS is an internationally agreed-upon list of requirements that ensure both organic methods and fair trade practices are used. From harvesting of the raw materials, through environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing and labeling—the entire production chain of GOTS-labeled products is organic. Like the OE Standard, GOTS-labeled products are certified organic and verified by a third party certification agency. All farms and factories that undergo inspection and certification are independently checked against strict ecological and social criteria.
Many of GroVia’s products (all-in-ones, soaker pads, boosters) adhere to either the OE or GOTS organic requirements and are certified by the Institute for Marketecology (IMO). IMO is a world-wide leader in the field of ecology and social quality assurance along the whole textile production chain. IMO is a Switzerland-based organization that was significantly involved in the development of GOTS—and was the first agency approved by the International Working Group on Organic Textile Standard to be a GOTS certifier.
Therefore, GroVia cotton is more than just described as organic; it is verified and certified by an internationally-recognized quality assurance organization. By choosing GroVia cotton products, you can rest assured that a reputable organization is ensuring that the entire process—from farm to fanny—is organic. If only what happens afterwards were this clean!
The IMO certification process begins all the way down at the farm level, where a rigorous set of rules is established to ensure that production of our cotton has a minimal impact on the environment. These rules require that organic cotton products be grown to ensure:
- Avoidance of synthesized fertilizers, pesticides, or defoliants
- The sustainable use of water and other resources Avoidance of Genetically Modified Organisms
- Sustained and ongoing improvement of soil fertility
But the process doesn’t end there, even though sometimes the audit can seem to never end! The next step is to ensure that IMO-certified products are manufactured in a socially responsible way. IMO certification requires a positive impact on the quality of life for farmers and workers in areas considered to be disadvantaged regions, as well as safe working conditions during the manufacturing process. Finally, IMO evaluates the fair trade policies of our company and ensures that our workers are being paid properly.
When manufacturers use a substantial certification process for their organic products, it makes it easier for consumers to make environmentally and socially conscious decisions. That integrity is important to us. At GroVia, we are very proud of the quality and standards of our certified organic products. We would be happy to provide additional details if you want to know more!
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